This course is an introduction to a field of engineering dedicated to improving the lives of people with disabilities. Rehabilitation engineering is the application of engineering analysis and design expertise to overcome disabilities and improve quality of life. A range of disabilities and assistive technologies will be investigated. The relationship between engineering innovation, the engineering design process, the human-technology interface, and the physical medicine and rehabilitation medical community will be explored. This course will require a semester long design project that addresses an unmet technological need. Students will choose a project with the instructor's approval. An engineering solution will be developed over the course of the semester through specification development, design reviews, and interacting with appropriate members of the medical community. There is a required visit to a local rehabilitation facility. For students who complete a software training module, access to a 3D printer will be available with assistance from an experienced designer.
An undergraduate engineering degree or permission of the instructor.